Alberta Minute: Balancing Pool, Cataract Surgery, and No Safe Supply Report
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
The Legislature will be sitting this week, starting on Monday with afternoon and evening sittings. This will be followed by Tuesday and Wednesday sittings in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Thursday will consist of morning and afternoon sittings. On Monday, debate will begin with Bill 16, the Insurance Amendment Act, 2022, and Bill 19, the Condominium Property Amendment Act, 2022.
It will be a quiet week for committees with only two meetings, both on Tuesday. From 8:00 am to 10:00 am, the Standing Committee on Public Accounts will meet to discuss the Ministry of Indigenous Relations Annual Report 2021-2022. From 6:00 pm to 7:15 pm, the Standing Committee on Alberta’s Economic Future will meet to continue discussions about the Lobbyists Act Review.
- The Select Special Committee to Examine Safe Supply will not be publishing their report this week as originally promised. According to the government, the Committee heard more than 15 hours of testimony and requires an extension to develop recommendations. The report will now be published at the end of June.
Last Week In Alberta:
The Government of Alberta said they will fund 25% more cataract surgeries this year through partnerships with private clinics. The total goal for cataract surgeries is 35,000 procedures, up from 28,000 last year. Funding for this initiative comes from the $133 million surgical initiative program. The provincial government hopes this move will free up space in hospital surgery rooms for other types of surgeries and help to decrease the backlog.
- The provincial government introduced a bill in the Legislature that aims to wind down the Balancing Pool by 2030. Bill 22, the Electricity Statutes (Modernizing Alberta's Electricity Grid) Amendment Act, will also allow developers to generate their own power and sell it to the grid. The previous government, under Premier Rachel Notley, stopped the Balancing Pool’s 15 years of profit by raising the carbon levy on coal plants. This caused power producers to return their contracts to the balancing pool and cost taxpayers about $1.3 billion.
- Statistics Canada released new census figures which revealed that there are 81 Canadians between the ages of 15 and 24 for every 100 who are between 55 and 64. Fifty years ago, the number was 200 people ages 15 to 24 for every 100 between the ages of 55 and 64. However, the Prairie provinces have maintained a larger younger population because of higher fertility rates and inward migration. It's almost like more young people are attracted to places they can actually get good jobs and afford to live!
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